Transportation in Australia

Budget-Friendly Transportation Solutions for Students

Learn tips and tricks to save on commuting costs and make the most of your student budget. Explore reliable options to help you get around without any bother.

Published on: May 15, 2024



As an international student, having the stress of managing other expenses while studying in Australia is really overwhelming, as they have to allocate and plan their expenses on a regular basis while staying away from their native land. Whether you want to travel from suburbs to downtown, travel from one state to the other, or simply want to commute to your campus, you need a source of transportation. But what all sources are there that can support the budget of a student is difficult to determine. Hence we have got to help you through this blog. Further, being a student from overseas, you must inculcate the feeling of moving out of the four walls of your room, as you would not get something to experience later on, therefore do not resist yourself because of the cost. In this blog, we will help you in exploring various budget friendly transportation solutions, from public transit and ride-sharing to biking and walking. We have got your back in saving money. So get set to enjoy your overall journey aside from the academic realm without breaking the bank. 



The need of Cost-Effective Transportation Solutions


We have to take in the concern of the students as well as the environment of the country. It is not just that if we choose a certain source of transportation, it benefits just a single category of livelihood. Consecutively, the impact of transportation choices extends to the environment and the economy as a whole. Therefore, advocating for cost-effective transportation solutions is not just about addressing the immediate needs of students; it's about fostering a holistic approach that considers economic efficiency, environmental conservation, and societal equity. 


The financial burden on the students can be alleviated if they choose budget friendly modes of transportation in Australia. As they have the commitment to address the expenses such as tuition fees, living expenses, cost of study material, and more they remain wiggling with their finances. Besides this the commute charges sum up if the accommodation is little far from the campus. This financial pressure can lead to increased stress and a need for students to seek out part-time jobs, which can further impact their academic performance and overall well-being.


In addition to financial concerns, there is a growing awareness of the environmental impact of our transportation choices. Thereby a student is advised to make very conscious choices about their transportation. Opting for eco-friendly transportation options not only helps save money but also contributes to a more sustainable future. By choosing public transit, biking, walking, or carpooling, students can play a vital role in decreasing pollution and conserving resources, aligning their transportation habits with their values and the broader movement towards environmental stewardship.



Budget-friendly transportation solutions for students


Australia boasts of having the best travel system and transportation services across the globe. The system is developed in a way that it abandones use of more personal vehicles and assures comfortable rides across cities, towns, etc. Let us look at the modes of transportation that are budget friendly mainly to the international students then the rest apart. 



Public Transport in Australia


These are services offered by the Australian government, them being in incharge of the maintenance, updation, comfortability and safety of the transport. These services are affordable and are accessible to all, as they are wide spread across in Australia. These transports basically include the buses, trains, ferry rides, etc. 


  • Local buses: The cost efficient solutions for students, providing reliable services, extensive  route networks, and are often equipped with amenities such as WiFi and comfortable seating. These are best for commuting to your campus without putting any pressure on the minds of an individual. You can purchase single tickets whenever you travel or simply avail the travel cards to use the bus for transportation.  

  • Trains: The train network is another major network to travel a bit long distance far away from the university. You can travel to cities such as Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth and Adelaide. You can book tickets for these through different payment methods including transport cards, Visa, Mastercard, Debit & Credit Cards and more. 

  • Ferries: This is a water transport and provides scenic views to the travellers. Cities like Sydney and Brisbane have the Brisbane river alongside the land, ferry rides are available there. Talking about the Brisbane ferry rides, it has 24 terminals at different destinations. The University of Queensland also has its own ferry stop for the students who have enrolled into it. 


For utilising these public transportation services you can use the apps giving real time information on buses and train schedules, route maps, and services alerts. The recommended apps are Transit, Moovit, or local transit authority apps like Metro Transit or Transport for London (TfL) can be invaluable tools for students looking to optimise their commute and explore their city with ease.



Cycling as a cost-effective alternative


The investment on purchasing a bicycle is one time and non recurring. You can use it as per your convenience and requirements. It is counted under your long term savings. You can cover short distances, or campus distance with this. Additionally, you would deduct the expenses of fuel, parking fees, and  public transit fares, a bicycle is a one-time purchase with minimal maintenance costs. Overall, it makes them a financially savvy choice for students seeking to minimise their transportation costs. 


Here are essential safety tips and gear recommendations:


  1. Wear a Helmet: Protect your head with a properly fitted helmet whenever you ride.

  2. Follow Traffic Rules: Obey traffic signals, signs, and road markings to ensure safe riding.

  3. Use Lights and Reflectors: Install front and rear lights and reflective gear to increase visibility, especially during low-light conditions.

  4. Choose Bike-Friendly Routes: Plan your route using bike lanes and paths whenever possible to avoid heavy traffic.

  5. Maintain Your Bicycle: Regularly check brakes, tires, and other components to ensure your bike is in good working condition.



Carpooling and Ride-Sharing 


You can book a car which is shared amongst 3 to 4 individuals, the ride cost is shared amongst them equally if the distance and location is same, unequal cost if the distance and location differs. You can use an app to book the rides, all you need is to select your desired location, make a reservation and it's done. Payment can usually be made using various methods, including credit or debit cards.


You can carpool with your friends, allowing you to share the expenses equally. Here’s how you can do that: 


  • Coordinate Schedules: Identify classmates or friends who live nearby or along your route to campus. Coordinate schedules to find convenient pick-up and drop-off times that work for everyone.

  • Establish Guidelines: Set clear guidelines regarding punctuality, cost-sharing arrangements, and any specific preferences such as music or temperature in the car.

  • Share Responsibilities: Rotate driving duties among carpool members to distribute the workload fairly. This can help reduce wear and tear on individual vehicles and minimise fuel expenses.

  • Use Apps for Coordination: Consider using messaging apps or group chats to stay organised and communicate updates or changes in schedules effectively.

  • Cab Ride-Sharing Services: You can use the popular car sharing apps such as UberPOOL, GoGet, Flexicar, Popcar, and Lyft. This transportation service is best for those who are comfortable in sharing rides and are heading in the same direction. They avail discounts compared to solo rides, making them a cost-effective alternative to traditional taxi services.



Campus Transportation services


The university campus has their own transportation services which can be used by students. This is also considered to be a one time investment as the fee can be submitted on the commencement of every semester. These usually operate on designated routes that connect to the key locations such as residence halls, academic buildings, parking lots, and nearby public transit stations. There are a few campuses in Australia offering shared bike programs allowing students to borrow bicycles for short-term use. 





You can explore the local surroundings simply by taking a walk around the nearby places to your accommodation. It’s also a great way to soak in Australia’s beautiful landscapes. You can commute short distances within campuses or nearby neighbourhoods. This adds nothing to the cost of transportation, and is time saving  compared to waiting for public transit or navigating traffic congestion. You can explore libraries and local shops on foot. 


Urban Planning: Pedestrian-friendly infrastructure plays a crucial role in enhancing the walking experience for students and residents alike:


  • Safety: More people will choose walking as a primary mode to commute, if these crossings are safe for walkers. 

  • Accessibility: Accessible pathways and ramps accommodate individuals with disabilities, promoting inclusivity and equitable access to educational institutions and community resources.





Students who have been facing troubles in navigating how they invest a huge share of money just on travel, might have got insights from this blog. The blog gives transportation options to the students and others too can access them as these are very pocket friendly, helping them in managing expenses. You have to make conscious choices and then you will contribute positively to the community as well as your own self. We encourage you to take measures as we understand how all these little unrecognised expenses can impact the overall budget of an individual. 

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